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Haecceity: Quadga, 2020
Haecceity: Quadga, 2020
25" x 9 1/4"

I'm fascinated by the concept of haecceity, the "thisness" of things.

I photographed these standing dead trees in September of 2020, on the shore of Quadga Lake in Minnesota's Boundary Waters Canoe Area. They burned in the Pagami Creek fire of 2011, but continue to stand in that particular spot, in this particular pattern.

Through a process that included multiple steps - taking several photographs, choosing which one to use, tracing it onto a woodblock with carbon paper, cutting that woodblock, and then printing it - I have captured an interpretation of the "thisness" of those particular trees, seen from one particular spot in the middle of that particular lake. This image is not some burned trees, or the idea of burned trees, but those particular ones. And yet it is clearly not those trees, but one of many prints of a carving of a copy of a photo of a certain view. Each step both created and destroyed information, giving each particular print a haecceity of its own, which is both separate from and linked to the haecceity of those particular trees.